Definition of hyperbole in English:



  • [mass noun] Exaggerated statements or claims not meant to be taken literally.

    ‘he vowed revenge with oaths and hyperboles’
    [mass noun] ‘you can't accuse us of hyperbole’
    • ‘But this exclamation is hyperbole; we are not speaking in literal seriousness.’
    • ‘Similarly, claims about the potential of the Internet are usually overstated and often hyperbole.’
    • ‘In a literary world filled with emotionalism and hyperbole, there are a few guiding stars.’
    • ‘Having said that let us not get carried away in hyperbole and rhetoric.’
    • ‘According to the narrator, fierce would be hyperbole for even the bravest of hobbits.’
    • ‘It's safe to say that hyperbole is the stuff of both poetry and protest movements.’
    • ‘Chandler's similes and sarcastic hyperboles are full of attitude in the contemporary New York sense.’
    • ‘Pack up the breathless hyperbole and just point us in the direction of better gear.’
    • ‘The instances are inconspicuous, but do make for a slight forcing of the effect towards hyperbole.’
    • ‘In return I can offer you glory, fame and a hatful of hyperbole.’
    • ‘He's using exaggeration and hyperbole to be entertaining - lots of writers do that.’
    • ‘They generally strike me as hyperbole that works to insult but not really to enlighten.’
    • ‘Such hyperbole deadens the sensitivity to moral distinctions in public discourse.’
    • ‘Behind every food scare, there is a barrage of claims and counter-claims, hyperbole and damage limitation.’
    • ‘In any other case this might sound like directorial hyperbole, but Lloyd has reason to be confident.’
    • ‘It is impossible to create a responsible ethical and policy debate in a climate of hyperbole.’
    • ‘Real tragedies do not need hyperbole, for they are intrinsically hyperbolic.’
    • ‘We see this in the recurrence of his favourite rhetorical figures of paradox and hyperbole.’
    • ‘He should then appreciate the fine line between Churchillian rhetoric and hyperbole.’
    • ‘Whether Alice actually wanted to put a hospital in the casino or the claim is merely gossipy hyperbole is unclear.’
    exaggeration, overstatement, magnification, amplification, embroidery, embellishment, overplaying, excess, overkill
    purple prose, puffery
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: via Latin from Greek huperbolē (see hyperbola).